Rabbi Eliezer Berland, the leader of the Shuvu Banim hasidic community, is reportedly seeking a plea bargain that would allow him to only serve a few months in prison.
According to a report by Channel 2, Rabbi Berland is pursuing a plea bargain that would have 18 months deducted from his sentence based on the time he spent in prison in South Africa and Israel, in addition to having his sentence shortened by a third for good behavior.
These reductions would leave him with only a few more months to spend in prison.
Rabbi Berland’s aids refused to confirm that there is a plea bargain in the works, and the prosecution refused to comment.
Rabbi Berland is being detained pending his trial for allegations of sexual harassment and assaulting a number of women.
He fled the country in 2013 after allegations against him surfaced. He was extradited to Israel in July by South Africa.
Rabbi Berland has maintained his innocence of all charges. He has said that there is a “dark conspiracy” to bring false charges against him.
Two months ago, Rabbi Berland appealed to Israel’s Chief Rabbis to help him be released from custody.
“I am in poor health and it’s hard for me to stand on my feet, I don’t know if I can survive this horrible suffering,” Rabbi Berland wrote to the Chief Rabbis.